Tony Juniper on grouse shooting

I didn’t attend this evening event at the Bird Fair, and hadn’t realised that it had been recorded, so I was surprised to hear quite how ‘establishment’ Tony Juniper sounded on this subject.

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7 Replies to “Tony Juniper on grouse shooting”

  1. Many thanks for showing that, Mark. Have to agree with Chris Packham, and Tony Juniper knows full well that talking and communicating has gone on for years and years, and all to no avail. The optimism of Tony Junipers appointment has wilted and died.

    1. Fortunately eleven years ago I had a good natter about Tony Juniper with a lady who knew him well and therefore expected this. If he really was the firebrand many people thought he was would he ever have got this position with English Nature in the first place?

  2. Quality dialogue, I'll be blunt here bullshit! its been tried on numerous occasions and always fails miserably because there can be no compromise according to those representing the grouse shooters, they neither want it or indeed will tolerate it. Also the more we discover and understand about DGS the more we know it is not possible and for DGS to survive it.
    If shooting grouse is to be sustainable and fit for purpose in this modern world then it should be on the Scandinavian model with walked up shooting in a natural habitat. The benefit of that is the maintenance of that natural habitat with all the benefits it brings to us all. The " grouse farms" as currently run in our uplands are unsustainable on almost all fronts and certainly indefensible.

  3. I guess Juniper would never have got the job if he thought otherwise(to missquote Chomsky). You know more than most that there has been much talk but very little dialog with the grouse shooting set so I can not think more talking is going to help(although I would never suggest not continuing to talk,one never knows epiphanies do happen ). Some actual action is needed, especially to draw a halt to the wildlife crime which seems endemic to grouse shoooting areas.

  4. I'm sure that many others who have in the past been involved in such "cross party" talks are as infuriated as I am when some "new kid on the block" who is often unaware of the full recent history of such dialogue ( they should make themselves aware before they speak of it!) . As a colleague at the time as NERF representatives we were involved in such talks ( as was Mark for RSPB) said it is like banging your head on a brick wall, sooner or later you realise this is pointless and stop.
    It seemed at the time that for several of the shooting organisations involved the talking itself was a suitable end result. They could point out to their fiercest critics outside the process and say " but we are talking about that very thing" without ever having any intention that such talks would result in any changes in their own perceptions or practices. I know we were genuinely looking to find ways forward as I'm sure were RSPB but in the end we both walked away realising we were getting nowhere in terms of practical solutions. All continuing was doing was damaging our own credibility ( and heads). Wherever compromise or solutions were they were certainly not at the table.
    All that came out of those fruitless years of talk was our understanding there was to be no compromise and the horrible unethical idea of "brood meddling". The latter was the final straw for us.
    The next round of talking without NERF, there for the raptor workers, the people with real knowledge from the field, produced the dreadful DEFRA Recovery plan centred around BM and a southern re-introduction, enough said.
    Juniper ought to all know this, if he doesn't he needed to find out before engaging mouth, he might then understand why his pointless utterances on the subject utterly infuriate so many.

  5. I don't remember NCC apologising for forestry in the Flow Country because local people were in favour - which by and large they were. And RSPB kept hammering away even when forestry started to make concessions.

    I am fed up and increasingly amazed by people who claim to have some authority saying 'we should talk' over DGS. To solve problems by talking there has to be some give on both sides but the shooting side has been aggressively resistant to any change whatsoever, even changes that don't affect the fundamentals of shooting, with lead being the big, glaring example. Michael Gove must be over the moon with getting Tony to chair EN - he must have expected a bit of push back in exchange for getting a name like that - but not a bit of it, pure party line.

    But don't despair - as I've said all along these are disastrous tactics for shooting - even before a change of political mood the debate has spread off the grouse moors to the wider shooting community. What started as solely a nature conservation issue has evolved into a debate, drifting into the rights and wrongs of killing for sport. In the run up to the Flow Country establishment foresters managed to suppress an NCC report on the problems of upland forestry - which turned out to be a big mistake because it didn't go away, but came back a few years later with a far more powerful critique which played a key role in the eventual suspension of upland planting. That is pretty much where shooting is now and Tony's support may prove anything but beneficial in the end.

  6. Sorry this comment is a bit late but I wanted to find time to listen carefully to the video.
    I have to agree strongly with what Chris Packham says. I find Tony Junipers stance totally unreasonable. The fact of the matter is that negotiation with grouse moor owners has tried and failed. If you or I broke the law on our own property we would have the police round to our house probably with a warning and if we continued to break the law we would be prosecuted and at least fined probably heavily.
    So we clearly have a classic situation here where it is one law for the rich and another for the poor which in this day and age is just NOT acceptable.
    I am surprised and disappointed in Tony Juniper’s stance. I believe it is a direct reflection of the Tory Parties vested interests and I am sorry Tony is not standing up for what is clearly right namely the adherence to the law. It is all sad and very disappointing but the battle for justice will continue unabated until it is won.


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